We love getting together with friends during the holidays. When entertaining at home, people always seem to gravitate to the kitchen. Everyone knows the food gets prepared in the kitchen so they end up there. Maybe it's time to start planning your parties around the kitchen?
If you're planning a few parties, you might also want to spruce up your kitchen decor. Why not put your time and money into small kitchen updates you can enjoy all year and decorate with food? Once you decide to design your party around the kitchen, you can pick foods that are colorful like cupcakes with red frosting, a red fruit punch, etc. With red plates, napkins and a few red bows tied around your lights or cabinet hardware, your kitchen is ready to entertain.
Kitchen Decorating Tips to Enjoy All Year
Take a few minutes to think about how you use your kitchen, i.e. how much wear and tear does it get as that will influence your decisions. You also don't want to spend too much money if you're considering a larger kitchen remodel in the future.
These projects are small enough that you can finish many of them in a weekend, although you'll want to allow some contingency in case you don't get everything done on schedule. If you haven't done this type of work before or don't have all the required tools, maybe you have a friend with experience who can help you out.
Another approach some homeowners take is to schedule their local handyman business to finish the project once you head back to work on Monday. Of course sometimes my handyman business has started a project by undoing homeowner work and noone is happy when that happens. As with any project, it's always better to plan in contingency – extra time, extra materials and a little flexibility on the final product.
- Light is especially important during the winter. You can add more light with stronger light bulbs (make sure the fixture can handle this), increase the number of fixtures in the room or adding/enlarging windows to let more natural light in.
- Color plays an important role in setting the mood of any room. A new coat of paint is any easy way to give any room a fresh look but plan wisely as kitchens and bathrooms take more time because of the extra work to cut around all the fixtures. One idea to keep a painting project manageable is to give one wall an accent color!
There are tools on the web to help you audition colors to try them out before you paint. Benjamin Moore offers a color visualizer that lets you upload a photo of your room, although I haven't had time to try it out (let me know how you like it).
- Texture using counter tops is another way to dress up your kitchen. Choices range from inexpensive laminates to Corian or granite, depending on your family's budget and lifestyle. Today's trend is to mix different cabinets and counter tops, so you've got lots of choices.
One of our handyman customers ordered new laminate counters at Lowe's and asked us to pick them up and install them. She didn't explain that her kitchen was going to be full of baking supplies and the party was the next day. Juggling to fit the L-shaped counter top into our van filled with tools was a challenge, and we worked into the evening to insure that the party would be a success.
- Cabinets can be dressed up with new hardware (we've installed hardware for several customers as guess what, there are a lot more pieces that you realize and one customer had almost 100 handles for us to install).
- You can replace kitchen cabinet doors and drawer fronts. This makes good sense when you have solid wood cabinets that are in good condition, and it's also possible to trim the cabinet boxes with matching veneer if you want to change the color or wood.
- Storage can be functional and creative. Ideas include an extra shelf over the sink or a window seat. If you've got too much loose paperwork, a magnetic bulletin board can help clear the clutter off your counter tops.
- Adding a tile backsplash introduces color and texture. Tin paneling which comes in an incredible selection of designs and colors (see AmericanTinCeilings.com) is also being used for backsplashes and ceilings, much like it existed a hundred years ago.